It is important to maintain the correct temperature inside your polytunnel. Temperature is regulated mainly by airflow through the structure and humidity in the air. To make your polytunnel comfortable, make sure it’s properly ventilated and insulated. You can also choose to reduce solar energy to keep temperatures low.
How to maintain optimal temperatures in a polytunnel
Keeping the temperature of a polytunnel as close to optimum as possible is important for the healthy growth of plants. Too much heat or cold can be disastrous for your plants, and you need to ensure good ventilation in your polytunnel to ensure that they stay healthy. There are several ways you can improve ventilation in your polytunnel.
The ideal temperature for most plants in a polytunnel is 26 to 30 degrees Celsius, although this can increase dramatically on very hot days. Too much heat will slow down germination, cause insect and disease problems, and damage the plant’s ability to produce food and produce energy. In addition, too much heat may even kill your plants.
Ventilation in a polytunnel
Proper ventilation in a polytunnel is essential for your crops’ health. Good air circulation helps to reduce the incidence of disease and ensures the crops grow well. Fortunately, there are a number of different ways to achieve this. Listed below are the main types of ventilation you can include in your polytunnel.
The type of ventilation you need depends on your climate and what you’ll be growing in the polytunnel. For example, if you live in Scotland, the need for ventilation is likely to be less than if you live in the southwestern United States, where summers are hot and humid. However, if you live somewhere with high summer temperatures, good ventilation is still important for your plants’ health.
To ensure that your plants get the maximum amount of ventilation possible, it’s important to keep the tunnel as open as possible during the day. You should close the polytunnel in the evening to maintain a constant temperature during the night. A large difference between day and night temperatures can cause problems for plants, especially tomatoes. Make sure you have the correct ventilation system for your polytunnel, and that you regularly open doors and side vents.
Insulation in a polytunnel
The plastic layer of a polytunnel contains air bubbles that trap heat, keeping it in and limiting the amount of warm air lost. The larger these bubbles are, the better, as they catch more light and aid the heating process. Taking the snow off the tunnel can also help reduce heat loss.
If you are concerned about maintaining a warm temperature inside the polytunnel in the winter, one of the easiest ways to do this is to use a cloche. These are inexpensive and convenient and are a great way to retain heat. Using a cloche will also allow you to grow your plants in the polytunnel even when the weather is extremely cold.
A polytunnel can have good insulation if it is earth sheltered. This way, the temperature remains consistent throughout the year. Passive solar design will also include measures to improve heat retention in a polytunnel. While insulation is important, good ventilation is equally important.
Growing crops in a polytunnel
Polytunnels allow gardeners to grow a wider range of crops that wouldn’t be possible outside. It also increases the length of the growing season because the equipment helps to regulate temperatures, humidity, irrigation, and ventilation. It’s also cheaper than greenhouses. The polyethylene film that covers the polytunnel decomposes after three to ten years, making it an environmentally-friendly tool.
If you’re a first-time grower, a polytunnel can be an excellent way to get started. It allows you to start seedlings much earlier, enabling you to harvest them earlier than you would otherwise be able to. Once seedlings have developed, you can plant them in permanent sites.
Cost of building a polytunnel
Building a polytunnel can be costly, but there are several ways to reduce the cost. For example, you can purchase a kit and save hundreds of pounds. This option can be ideal for those with a reasonable DIY skill level and willing helpers. The best day to install the cover is during warm weather, as the plastic will be more pliable and stretch over the frame easier. Ensure that the area is level and free of obstacles before erecting the structure. If the site is exposed, you may also need to put in fences or hedging first.
The cost of a polytunnel depends on its size and shape. Larger polytunnels cost more than smaller ones. A domestic polytunnel may be 10 feet wide, while a commercial one can be as large as 90 feet. Most polytunnels come with instructions to help you assemble them yourself, but if you are unsure of the process, you may want to hire someone to do it for you.